Article: PDF OnlyCanal Clearance in Burst Fractures using the AO Internal FixatorGertzbein, S. D., MD, FRCS (C)*; Crowe, P. J., MD†; Fazl, M., MD, FRCS“(C)†; Schwartz, M., MD, FRCS (C)†; Rowed, D., MD, FRCS (C)†Author Information * The Texas back Institute, Houston, Texas, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Spine: May 1992 - Volume 17 - Issue 5 - p 558–560 Buy Abstract The purpose of this study was to evaluate the ability of posterior distraction delivered by the AO internal fixator to effect a satisfactory reduction of the intraspinal fragments in burst fractures. The overall decompression achieved was from an initial compromise of 54% to a residual encroachment of 40%. Canal clearance proved most effective when carried out in the first 4 days, with an initial canal compromise of between 34 and 66%. The extent of improvement, even in this group, was not dramatic, with an average of 31% encroachment still remaining, with some cases as high as 50%. Therefore, we recommend that when canal clearance is essential. Anterior decompression is the treatment of choice. © Lippincott-Raven Publishers.